Common Office Aches and How to Prevent Them

Working in an office environment can give you some aches and pains that other jobs typically won’t. Here are four of the most common office-pains and some ways to prevent them.

 Pain of lower back

1.   Bursitis

Bursitis is caused by repeated and prolonged pressure applied to areas where tissues, bones, tendons, and skin rub against each other. Typically, this appears as a lump on your wrist.

Prevention: Warming up before enduring strenuous activity is the easiest prevention. This can be as simple as stretching your wrist and fingers before typing.

2.   Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

This affects the wrist and causes the hand to feel numb or tingly if there is too much pressure being applied. It is commonly caused from overuse resulting in damaged nerves.

Prevention: Routine hand and wrist exercises reduce the risk of carpal tunnel. Doing Isometric stretches strengthen the muscles in the wrist and hands.

3.   Office chair back strains

If your office doesn’t have new furniture, chances are it isn’t ergonomically supportive for your back. This can result in muscle strains that make the rest of your day very uncomfortable, or worse, result in lost productivity.

Prevention: Adhering to office ergonomic guidelines is a first step in reducing these injuries. Be sure to take note of your desk posture, as well, and correct any non-ergonomic positions.

4.   Shoulder pain

This is typically caused from prolonged, repetitive, or awkward movements and is referred to as either a repetitive strain injury (RSI) or cumulative trauma disorder.

Prevention: Reduce the stress your body endures per day. This will help you relax and eventually your shoulder muscles will loosen up.  This is a good time to take advantage of a deep desk cleaning as well.

Not every person’s body can handle the rigors of office work as easily as others can. This is true of people who work manual labor jobs, as well. In order for you to have a productive business, all of your employees need to have the knowledge of how to prevent any workplace injuries from occurring.

Planning the Most Productive 2017

At the end of the holiday season comes the New Year—a time to consider both where you began at the beginning of the year, where you are currently, and what you want to achieve in the future. Here are some New Year’s resolutions for your small business to help you maximize your productivity 2017.

Calender Planner Organization Management Remind Concept

1.   Get organized

Studies have shown that there is a direct correlation between being organized and efficiency. When you’re more efficient, it’s easier to keep your work on a schedule.

2.   Plan out each day

There’s a saying: “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.” Every night, write out five accomplishments you’d like to achieve the following day.

3.   Keep meetings to 15 minutes or less

Doing so forces you to come to the meeting prepared. There will be no time to catch anyone up if that meeting is going to be productive at all. This requires your team to use forethought and organizational skills that go beyond day-to-day functionality.

4.   Use early morning time as catch-up time

If you have a hectic travel schedule, keeping up with elements happening at the office in your absence can be hectic. Use each morning, before business hours, to catch up on emails and other communications you need before starting your day.

5.   Stop multitasking

Multitasking is not a sign of productivity. It is a sign of scatter-brained business habits. This reduces the quality of your work output, which can have negative effects on your brand.

6.   Take intervallic breaks while you work

Not only is this good for people who work in creative fields, but it helps create a dynamic work culture as well. Giving employees the ability to break allots them time to collaborate on ideas away from their desks, thereby increasing productivity.

7.   Unplug and unwind

Make sure your work doesn’t follow you home. Focusing your mind on things other than work will give you refreshed perspectives once it’s time to return to the office.

The holiday season is a great time to remember that your future is never far away. These resolutions are sure to help your business grow into the future.

Love Where You Live: 5 Local Charities to Give to this Winter

Arrow has seen its community blossom into one of the most giving communities in Colorado, offering many charities and foundations to donate to during the holidays. Here are five charities that encourage the entrepreneurial spirit of the holiday bustle.

Boulder Charities

1.   Boulder Bridge House

The Boulder Bridge House creates opportunity for Colorado’s homeless and working poor by offering housing support, hygiene, and job placement services. Their Ready-to-Work program teaches homeless adults job skills while providing them a chance to earn and save some money to ease their eventual societal transition.

2.   Paradox Sports

Paradox changes how someone who’s disabled views their disability by giving them an inspirational opportunity to overcome any fears of their body. In 2015 they helped over 450 people suffering from various (dis)abilities such as spinal cord contusions, amputation/limb difference, PTSD, and more.

3.   Anthony H. Kruse Foundation

This foundation is the largest private, non-operating foundation in Boulder, and the 10th largest in the state. They focus on developing opportunities for youth including education, health, and wellness.

4.   Boulder Ballet

Devoted artists and entrepreneurs share the same spirit. Typically, the holiday season is a busy time for ballet troupes. They’re performing The Nutcracker from Thanksgiving through the New Year; routinely pulling multiple shows per day.

5.   Community Foundation: Boulder County

For 25 years, the Community Foundation has been growing a culture of philanthropy and making a difference in Boulder County. Through informed decision-making, they inspire ideas, ignite action and mobilize diverse resources to improve the quality of life for everyone in Boulder County.

As easy as it is to become entrenched in the holiday shopping bustle, it’s just as easy to budget in some charitable spending.

5 Ways to Celebrate Your Employees this Holiday Season

The holiday season is the perfect opportunity to let employees know how much you appreciate them. This can be done through gifts, certificates, parties, etc. Here are some ideas that are sure to tell your employees that you value them.

employee appreciation

Ugly Sweater Contest

Giving your employees a day to wear the most god-awful, gaudy sweater they could find lets them express their personality in a way that’s season-appropriate. They can pose for group pictures so that you all can laugh at how terrible everyone looks, together.

Employee-Centric Holiday Card

Featuring your employees on the company holiday card is a great way for your customers and clients to get to meet the people behind the scenes. This gives your employees the satisfaction of seeing that they, too, are a part of the business, not just cogs in the machine.

Holiday Luncheon

Give everyone an hour or two during a certain day to celebrate all that they’ve accomplished together during the past year. This is a wonderful teambuilding activity that allows your employees cross-function interaction that they may otherwise miss.

One Free Day to Call Out

The holiday season is a busy time for both businesses and employees alike. Giving your employees a free day to call out of work shows that you acknowledge there may be some familial obligations they need extra time to prepare for.

Be a Mentor

Sometimes, the greatest gift of all is knowledge. Giving your employees advice and mentorship during the holiday season shows that you care about what they bring to the business. Doing so enhances their chances of moving up into key roles later in their career, and gives you a chance to connect with your staff in new ways.

The holiday season is about making connections that will carry deep into the year ahead. Being able to connect with your employees is a great way to implement incentives and motivation in a staff without slashing your employee benefits budget.

6 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues

Winter may get off to a warm start this year, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be cold days that seem to drag on forever. You can beat these winter blues with a few simple lifestyle changes.

winter blues

  1. Vitamin D and Light Therapy

The sun isn’t just our source of light and warmth on Earth, it also stabilizes your mood and boosts overall health. Drinking milk, eating fatty fish, and taking supplements are easy ways to reverse the winter blues.

  1. Stay Active

Even if you’ve already forgotten about your New Year’s resolution to get in the gym, don’t worry. Scientists say that physical activity is good for both your body and mind, helping you release stress-busting endorphins that will help you relax this winter.

  1. Charity

Volunteering is a great way for those who feel blue to break out of their slump and get involved in their community. Scientists suggest that socializing out of the house is a key component to beating depression and catching the holiday spirit.

  1. Stick to a Schedule

There’s no need to change your routine just because snow is on the ground. If you’ve been exercising all year outdoors, then keep doing it—even if you need to wear multiple layers of clothes now.

  1. Do Things You Enjoy

Some activities like gardening may seem seasonal, but they are a significant source of joy and happiness, even if you don’t realize it while you’re doing it. If you’re a devoted gardener, try some indoor planting.

  1. Stay Cozy

Stop trying to avoid winter. Continually thinking about how much you don’t like the season will make it more likely that you’ll feel sad as the season wears on. Light some candles, invite some friends over and make cocoa instead.

Learning to embrace winter rather than hide from it is the best way to alleviate the winter blues. Finding activities you enjoy and good people to enjoy them with will make the cold season go by much quicker.

Love Where You Live: What Makes Boulder Special During the Holidays?

Boulder isn’t just a college town. During the holidays, the town turns into an event hub featuring live music, sports, food & drink, and annual festivals guaranteed to entertain the young and old.  Here is a brief list of things to do in and around Boulder this holiday season.

Boulder Winter

Turkey Shoot (November 19th)

Not ready for Thanksgiving yet? Ages 6 to adult can bag a holiday turkey during this free-throw shooting contest at the Bob L. Burger Recreational Center. Turkeys will be awarded to the best shooters in both male and female age groups. We promise no turkeys will be harmed at the event.

Longmont’s Tree Lighting (November 25th)

Kick off the season with theatre and musical performances, special appearances by Santa and friends, and join in the annual tree lighting ceremony. At the corner of 6th Ave and Main Street in downtown Longmont.

Louisville Parade of Lights (December 2nd)

This annual festival is held in conjunction with the monthly art walk in downtown Louisville. There will also be caroling, visits with Santa, and other holiday-themed activities. Event starts with the art walk from 4-6:30, the parade commences soon after.

Erie County Christmas Parade of Lights (December 2nd)

This annual event includes holiday lessons from Santa’s workshop, caroling, complimentary s’mores, a living nativity scene, hayrides, and a parade. Festivities start at 5pm in downtown Erie.

Home for the Holidays (December 3rd, Lafayette)

Lafayette’s annual family event features visits from Santa, hot cocoa, holiday cookies, and live reindeer at Festival Plaza. There is caroling and tree lighting at dusk, along with a sing-a-long and potluck dinner.

Whether you’re with the entire family, or just the one you love, these events are sure to bring holiday cheer to everyone who attends. In true Boulder fashion, attendees are encouraged to come hungry and prepare to be sent home happy.

5 Events in Boulder this Fall for Small Business Owners

Networking is the mainframe of any expanding business. Without it, the business risks becoming unable to adapt when the market changes. It also emphasizes that positive community relationships are paramount to a successful business.

Here are a few networking opportunities this fall for small business owners in Boulder County:

1.      Strategic Connections Flat Irons 2016 Open House: (Free)
Thursday October 20, 7:30-9:30 AM MDT,
TBD Boulder, Co.

The Colorado Thought Leaders Forum holds this event to bring an open forum for sharing valuable, timely information among business leaders that influence not only the business leader themselves, but the business as a whole.

2.      2016 Workers Comp. Safety Seminar: Safety Through Good Hiring Practices: (Free)
Wednesday October 26, 11:00 am-12:52 pm, RSVP by October 25th
Longmont Chamber Commerce Room:
528 Main St. Longmont Co. 80501

This course offers attendee’s the opportunity to learn how to safely introduce employees to your workplace, pre-and-post offer. Learn how to select employees that will be as committed to safety as you are.

3.      50 Ways to Market Your Small Business: ($45.00)
Wednesday October 26, 9:00 am-12:00 pm,
Boulder Public Library Main Branch
1001 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder, CO 80302

Speaker Maureen Kanwischer will lead a seminar on focusing your business’ marketing strategy to utilize its most effective tactics. This workshop is designed for business owners of all types to revamp the way you consider marketing.

4.       Tax Considerations for Small Businesses: ($45.00)
Thursday, November 03, 9:30 am – 12:00 pm
Boulder Small Business Development Center
528 Main Street Longmont, Co. 80501

Multiple speakers from Accounting, and Tax fields link-up to create a seminar geared towards developing small business owner’s understandings in topics such as choice of entity, filing requirements, business expenses, health insurance and more!

5.      October Networking Mixer @ Centennial Bank and Trust: (Free with RSVP)
Wednesday October 26th, 5:00 – 7:00 pm,
Centennial Bank and Trust Branch
199 S. Briggs Street, Erie

Small business owners, employees, friends and family are invited to a relaxing gathering complete with great food and drink. Come connect with old friends, meet new clients, and learn more about the local businesses in this community.

Getting out in the community is a great way for a business leader to show their customer base that they have their best interests in mind. It’s also a great way to meet new clients and reconnect with old friends.

4 Power Snacks and 1 Guilty Pleasure

Everyone has had that feeling before: It’s two o’clock, you’ve been back from lunch for a little over an hour (hopefully), and your eyes just can’t stay open. No matter what you try, your eyes keep getting heavier and heavier.

Here are four snacks to stash in your desk that will help alleviate those mid-afternoon blues and one to share with your boss while they’re giving you a lecture about getting enough sleep at night.

1.      Blueberries

Tufts University scientists found that blueberries have an incredible ability to boost memory, cognition, and may reverse loss of coordination. If you can’t stomach them raw, try them in trail mix and granola bars to minimize their bitterness.

2.      Whole Grains

Found in just about every kind of snack and energy bar on the market, whole grains slowly release glucose into the blood stream, keeping you mentally sharp all day. Most bars are made with all-natural ingredients, and have fewer calories than a can of diet soda. Some other great sources of whole grains are cereal, oatmeal, and pastas.

3.      Pumpkin Seeds

It’s that time of the season. Instead of watching your kids throw them around the kitchen at one another, take them and bake them with some salt and cinnamon. The seeds are rich in Zinc, an element which enhances brain agility and memory.

4.      Broccoli

Broccoli contains a healthy amount of Vitamin K, which has been shown to boost brain power and cognitive function. For the best results, eat raw or as close to it as you can..

Guilty Pleasure: Caffeine

Found in just about every workplace drink machine, caffeine can be the perfect stimulus one needs to perform at their highest. Be careful though. Too much will have the opposite effect. Taking in moderate amounts (50-300mg) can increase alertness, energy and ability to concentrate. It will not, however, get you out of an uncomfortable meeting with your boss. But, it may lighten the mood.

Having a healthy snack at your desk can greatly improve productivity and overall well-being. These snacks will also bring a little bit of Boulder into your office with their freshness and variety.

Love Where You Live: Top 10 Local Boulder Coffee Shops with that Colorado Feel

Whether you’ve just moved to Colorado or are just blowing through, these coffee shops will give you an experience truly unique to the square state.

1.      Pekoe Sip HouseBoulder, Co.

Yelp Rating: 4 stars

Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

They offer a wide variety of teas, coffees, and other drinks that are sure to leave you wondering why you ever bought commercial products in the first place. Skip the line and order online! Pekoe offers natural food and drinks that are as refreshing as mountain air.

2.      Village Coffee Boulder, Co.

Yelp Rating: 4.5 stars

Social Media: Facebook

Village Coffee is the perfect early morning or late afternoon spot to enjoy a tall coffee. What makes it unique to Colorado is its simplicity. Its open floor plan, complete with breakfast bar and dining area, make it very easy to interact with everyone around you. It’s a communal kind of place.

3. East Simpson Coffee Company Lafayette, Co.

Yelp Rating: 4.5 stars

Social Media: Facebook, Instagram

Located in Historic Old Town Lafayette, East Simpson is a collision of the past and present, all rolled up like one of their Toasted Hot Pockets. East Simpson Street was the epicenter of mining and excavation work at the turn of the 20th century, and is credited as the starting place of commercial business in Lafayette. East Simpson Coffee Company is well aware of this history, and displays it with pride.

4.      Java Stop Longmont, Co.

Yelp Rating: 4.5 stars

Located on Main Street in the heat of Downtown Longmont, Javastop has been named the best coffee shop in town, “hands down”, by locals and passers-by alike. It has a warm, rustic, atmosphere, pairs well with the local art on the walls and the smell of fresh baked muffins in the air.

5.      Boxcar Coffee RoastersBoulder, Co.

Yelp Rating: 4.5 stars

Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

Known for their espresso art and delectable pastries, Boxcar is a must-see for anyone visiting Boulder, or a local looking for a new hangout. Each employee is dressed in a vest and bowtie, giving Boxcar an air of sophistication that fits the Colorado feel.

These coffee shops are great to take clients to for meetings and lunches. Their authentic Colorado feel will give your clients a sense of the local community your business represents.

Why Our Customers Love the ArrowStream Process

At Arrow, we want to give our customers an easy way to use our services. The ArrowStream Process improves your workspace flow and supply management. Lighten your load and focus on what you do best, running your business. Here are the ArrowStream Process helps bring peace of mind to your office.

We'll Make it Easy

You will have easy access to your personal account representative and direct access to ownership. It is key to us that you are receiving the best customer service possible when using our service. Our team takes priority in listening to your comments and suggestions. Anytime you have a question about the service we can ensure you will be speaking with a real person that genuinely cares about your concerns.

Ordering office products can become time consuming and more of a hassle than it should be. With ArrowStream, you will have access to 60,000 products that can be ordered on line, over the phone, via fax, or by e-mail. After your first order, the inventory manager within the ArrowStream Process will keep your supply closet well stocked with the products you need to run your office smoothly.

Do not worry about expensive delivery fees with all the office products you are needing to stock up on. ArrowStream offers free next day delivery with no minimum order amount. When you are in a pickle and need an emergency delivery, we are available when you need us. If you cannot find what you are looking for through our products we will do the hunting and help place your order with our suppliers to fill your needs in a timely manner. You let our dedicated delivery personnel know where you want the products and we will make sure to get them in and out of the way.

When you are ready to truly optimize your workspace and workflow by obtaining new furniture and a new layout to the office, the Space Planning is done by our professionals with your input and needs as the top priority. The furniture you have carefully selected will be assembled prior to delivery by Arrow team members. You will  not have to waste a day unpacking products, assembling and cleaning packaging messes.

Ultimately, we want you to have one less thing on your plate to worry about. The ArrowStream process is all about making it happen and going the extra mile to help you and your employees or coworkers be your best you can be.